Table of Contents

  1. General
    1. Purpose
    2. Application
    3. Definitions
    4. Exceptions
  2. Functional Performance Criteria
  3. Technical Requirements
    1. Software applications and operating systems.
    2. Web-based information and applications.
    3. Telecommunications products.
    4. Video and multimedia products.
    5. Self contained, closed products.
    6. Desktop and portable computers.
    7. Information, Documentation, and Support

General

Purpose

The Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act (Public Act 095-0307) requires that information technology developed, purchased, or provided by the State is accessible to individuals with disabilities. These Standards define the functional performance criteria and technical requirements that must be met to ensure that information technology is accessible.

Application

Each State entity shall ensure that information technology that it, or its contractors, develops, purchases, or provides for use by or on behalf of the State complies with the applicable provisions of these standards to the greatest extent possible, unless one or more of the exceptions identified in the following section apply. These standards apply to all newly developed, purchased, or provided information technology and to substantial modifications made to existing information technology.

Compliance with these standards can be established by (i) demonstration of compliance with the Functional Performance Criteria, and/or (ii) documentation of compliance with the Technical Requirements. If information technology does not comply with the Technical Requirements, it is the responsibility of the State entity developing, purchasing, or providing that information technology to document how compliance with the Functional Performance Criteria has been demonstrated.

These standards do not require (i) the installation of specific accessibility-related software or peripheral devices at a workstation of an individual who is not an individual with a disability or (ii) that equipment be made available for access at a location where that information technology is not customarily available to the public.

Definitions

Accessibility
The ability to receive, use, and manipulate data and operate controls included in electronic and information technology in a manner equivalent to that of individuals who do not have disabilities.
Alternate Formats
Alternate formats usable by people with disabilities may include, but are not limited to, Braille, large print (18 point or larger), recorded audio, and electronic formats that comply with these standards.
Assistive Technology
Any item, piece of equipment, or system, whether acquired commercially, modified, or customized, that is commonly used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities. For example, assistive technologies include, but are not limited to, large monitors, alternate keyboard devices, screen magnification software, screen reading software, speech recognition software, Braille displays, TTYs, hearing aids, cochlear implants, assistive listening devices, etc.
Electronic and information technology
Electronic information, software, systems, and equipment used in the creation, manipulation, storage, display, or transmission of data, including internet and intranet systems, software applications, operating systems, video and multimedia, telecommunications products, kiosks, information transaction machines, copiers, printers, and desktop and portable computers.
Individuals with disabilities
Individuals with impairments that limit their ability to use information technology. This includes, but is not limited to, individuals with low vision, blindness, hardness of hearing, deafness, limited use of their hands, no use of their hands, or other similar impairments.
Leading assistive technologies
The most widely-used assistive technology products, usually including the two most recent production versions of the two most popular products in each category based on market share. For example, as of January 1, 2008, this would include ZoomText 8 & 9 and MAGic 10 & 11 (screen magnifiers), JAWS 8 & 9 and Window-Eyes 5 & 6 (screen readers), Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 & 9 and ViaVoice 9 & 10 (speech recognition software). State entities may require compatibility with other specific products/versions when necessary.
State entity
Executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the State of Illinois, including its departments, divisions, agencies, constitutional offices, public bodies, and public universities. The term does not include units of local government, school districts, or community colleges.
Substantial Modifications
Changes to existing information technology that include:
  • adding new business functionality
  • moving to a new or updated platform, such as presentation layer, database, technical architecture, or programming language
  • replacing an old system
  • outsourcing or in-sourcing a system, either partially or completely
  • potentially instantiating an enterprise application or service
Making an existing technology available to a new audience, such a new agency or the public is also a substantial modification.

Exceptions

Intelligence or Security Systems

These standards do not apply to information technology used for activities related to intelligence, national security, command and control of military forces, weapons system, or systems which are critical to the direct fulfillment of military or intelligence missions. This exception does not apply to information technology that is used for administrative and business purposes (including payroll, finance, logistics, and personnel management applications) or any information technology that is intended for use by the public.

Incidental to a Contract

These standards do not apply to information technology that is purchased or used by a contractor if that information technology is not to be provided for use by or on behalf of a State entity.

Fundamental Alteration

Specific provisions of these standards do not apply if those provisions would require a fundamental alteration of the information technology that would prevent the information technology from being used for its intended purpose.

Maintenance and Monitoring Areas

These standards do not apply to information technology that is designed to be accessed only for maintenance, repair, or occasional monitoring. These standards do apply to the controls or interfaces of such information technology that can be executed externally or remotely.

Narrow, Delineated Use

These standards do not apply to information technology that is intended for personal/private use by individuals or limited, well-defined groups of users, if a State entity can demonstrate that equivalent information technology that does comply with these standards can be readily provided as needed to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities. This exception does not apply to any information technology that is intended for use by the public.

Commercial Unavailability

These standards do not apply if there is no information technology for a given purpose available in the commercial marketplace that complies with these standards. If information technology is commercially available that meets some but not all of these standards, a State entity must procure the product that best meets these standards. This exception does not apply to information technology that is developed or substantially modified by or for a State entity.

Undue Burden

Specific provisions of these standards do not apply if a State entity determines that compliance with those provisions would impose an undue burden on the State entity. The decision that compliance would result in such a burden should be made by the head of the State entity or his or her designee. When claiming an undue burden, the State entity must document why, and to what extent, compliance with each such provision creates an undue burden, considering all resources available to the State entity, and must be prepared to provide individuals with disabilities with the information and data involved by an alternative means in a timely manner.

Equivalent Facilitation

The Technical Requirements of these standards do not apply if a State entity can demonstrate and document that an alternate technical approach results in substantially equivalent or greater access to and use of the information technology for individuals with disabilities.

Functional Performance Criteria

To be considered accessible, information technology developed, purchased, or provided by or on behalf of the State must be usable in a timely, accurate, complete, and efficient manner by:

People with Limited Vision
Individuals who operate information technology visually, but require magnification and/or color enhancement.
People who are Blind
Individuals who cannot effectively see visually-displayed information, including individuals who do not have eyes, and must use alternate interface modes such as speech and/or tactile interfaces.
People with Hearing Loss
Individuals who have reduced ability to hear sounds and/or speech and require amplification or other assistive technology.
People who are Deaf
Individuals who cannot discriminate and/or process auditory sounds and speech and rely on auxiliary aids such as captioning and/or sign language.
People with Limited Speech
Individuals with mild to moderate speech impairments who can speak but may not be able to effectively operate speech recognition systems.
People with No Speech
Individuals with no ability to speak who cannot effectively operate sound recognition systems and who must use alternate forms of expressive communication.
People with Limited Reach, Strength, or Manipulation
Individuals with limited fine motor control, reach, or strength, who have difficulty operating standard input devices and must use modified input devices.
People with No Reach or Touch
Individuals with no effective use of their hands who cannot use hands/fingers to operate physical input devices and must use alternate interface modes such as head movement or speech.

The Functional Performance Criteria may be satisfied directly, by features incorporated within the information technology, or through the use of leading assistive technologies. If assistive technology is required to meet the Functional Performance Criteria, it must be widely and readily available and it must be used in a typical manner of operation consistent with its user documentation. If customization of the assistive technology is required, the State entity developing, purchasing, or providing the information technology must ensure that any necessary customizations are provided and supported as part of the information technology.

Technical Requirements

The following Technical Requirements specify technical characteristics and features that may be used to ensure that information technology satisfies the Functional Performance Criteria. If information technology complies with the Technical Requirements, it is not necessary to explicitly demonstrate compliance with the Functional Performance Criteria; if information technology does not comply with the Technical Requirements, it is the responsibility of the State entity developing, purchasing, or providing that information technology to document how compliance with the Functional Performance Criteria has been demonstrated.

The following Technical Requirements are based on Section 508 Standards and, for Web-based intranet and internet information and applications, World Wide Web Consortium Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Priorities 1 and 2. As those standards and guidelines are updated, the State of Illinois will review the new standards and guidelines, and modify these Technical Requirements as appropriate.

Software applications and operating systems.

  1. When software is designed to run on a system that has a keyboard, all significant product functions shall be executable from a keyboard.
  2. Applications shall not disrupt or disable activated features of other products that are identified as accessibility features, where those features are developed and documented according to industry standards. Applications also shall not disrupt or disable activated features of any operating system that are identified as accessibility features where the application programming interface for those accessibility features has been documented by the manufacturer of the operating system and is available to the product developer.
  3. A well-defined on-screen indication of the current focus shall be provided that moves among interactive interface elements as the input focus changes. The focus shall be programmatically exposed so that assistive technology can track focus and focus changes.
  4. Sufficient information about a user interface element including the identity, operation and state of the element shall be available to assistive technology. When an image represents a program element, the information conveyed by the image must also be available in text.
  5. When bitmap images are used to identify controls, status indicators, or other programmatic elements, the meaning assigned to those images shall be consistent.
  6. Textual information shall be provided through operating system functions for displaying text. The minimum information that shall be made available is text content, text input caret location, and text attributes.
  7. Applications shall not override user selected contrast and color selections and other individual display attributes.
  8. When animation is displayed, the information shall be displayable in at least one non-animated presentation mode at the option of the user.
  9. Color coding shall not be used as the only means of conveying information, indicating an action, prompting a response, or distinguishing a visual element.
  10. When a product permits a user to adjust color and contrast settings, a variety of color selections capable of producing a range of contrast levels shall be provided.
  11. Software shall not use flashing or blinking text, objects, or other elements having a flash or blink frequency greater than 2 Hz and lower than 55 Hz.
  12. When electronic forms are used, the form shall allow people using assistive technology to access the information, field elements, and functionality required for completion and submission of the form, including all directions and cues.

Web-based information and applications.

Telecommunications products.

  1. Telecommunications products or systems which provide a function allowing voice communication and which do not themselves provide a TTY functionality shall provide a standard non-acoustic connection point for TTYs. Microphones shall be capable of being turned on and off to allow the user to intermix speech with TTY use.
  2. Telecommunications products which include voice communication functionality shall support all commonly used cross-manufacturer non-proprietary standard TTY signal protocols.
  3. Auto-attendant and interactive voice response telecommunications systems shall be usable by TTY users with their TTYs.
  4. Auto-attendant and interactive voice response telecommunications systems that require a response from a user within a time interval, shall give an alert when the time interval is about to run out, and shall provide sufficient time for the user to indicate more time is required.
  5. Where provided, caller identification and similar telecommunications functions shall also be available for users of TTYs, and for users who cannot see displays.
  6. For transmitted voice signals, telecommunications products shall provide a gain adjustable up to a minimum of 20 dB. For incremental volume control, at least one intermediate step of 12 dB of gain shall be provided.
  7. If the telecommunications product allows a user to adjust the receive volume, a function shall be provided to automatically reset the volume to the default level after every use.
  8. Where a telecommunications product delivers output by an audio transducer which is normally held up to the ear, a means for effective magnetic wireless coupling to hearing technologies shall be provided.
  9. Interference to hearing technologies (including hearing aids, cochlear implants, and assistive listening devices) shall be reduced to the lowest possible level that allows a user of hearing technologies to utilize the telecommunications product.
  10. Products that transmit or conduct information or communication, shall pass through cross-manufacturer, non-proprietary, industry-standard codes, translation protocols, formats or other information necessary to provide the information or communication in a usable format. Technologies which use encoding, signal compression, format transformation, or similar techniques shall not remove information needed for access or shall restore it upon delivery.
  11. Products which have mechanically operated controls or keys, shall comply with the following:
    1. Controls and keys shall be tactilely discernible without activating the controls or keys.
    2. Controls and keys shall be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist. The force required to activate controls and keys shall be 5 lbs. (22.2 N) maximum.
    3. If key repeat is supported, the delay before repeat shall be adjustable to at least 2 seconds. Key repeat rate shall be adjustable to 2 seconds per character.
    4. The status of all locking or toggle controls or keys shall be visually discernible, and discernible either through touch or sound.

Video and multimedia products.

  1. All analog television displays 13 inches and larger, and computer equipment that includes analog television receiver or display circuitry, shall be equipped with caption decoder circuitry which appropriately receives, decodes, and displays closed captions from broadcast, cable, videotape, and DVD signals. Widescreen digital television (DTV) displays measuring at least 7.8 inches vertically, DTV sets with conventional displays measuring at least 13 inches vertically, and stand-alone DTV tuners, whether or not they are marketed with display screens, and computer equipment that includes DTV receiver or display circuitry, shall be equipped with caption decoder circuitry which appropriately receives, decodes, and displays closed captions from broadcast, cable, videotape, and DVD signals.
  2. Television tuners, including tuner cards for use in computers, shall be equipped with secondary audio program playback circuitry.
  3. All video and multimedia that contain essential auditory information shall be open or closed captioned when provided to the public and/or required to be viewed by employees.
  4. All video and multimedia productions that contain essential visual information shall be audio described when provided to the public and/or required to be viewed by employees.
  5. Display or presentation of alternate text presentation or audio descriptions shall be user-selectable unless permanent.

Self contained, closed products.

  1. Self contained products shall be usable by people with disabilities without requiring an end-user to attach assistive technology to the product. Personal headsets for private listening are not assistive technology.
  2. When a timed response is required, the user shall be alerted and given sufficient time to indicate more time is required.
  3. Where a product utilizes touchscreens or contact-sensitive controls, an input method shall be provided that complies with Telecommunications Products (k) (1) through (4).
  4. When biometric forms of user identification or control are used, an alternative form of identification or activation, which does not require the user to possess particular biological characteristics, shall also be provided.
  5. When products provide auditory output, the audio signal shall be provided at a standard signal level through an industry standard connector that will allow for private listening. The product must provide the ability to interrupt, pause, and restart the audio at anytime.
  6. When products deliver voice output in a public area, incremental volume control shall be provided with output amplification up to a level of at least 65 dB. Where the ambient noise level of the environment is above 45 dB, a volume gain of at least 20 dB above the ambient level shall be user selectable. A function shall be provided to automatically reset the volume to the default level after every use.
  7. Color coding shall not be used as the only means of conveying information, indicating an action, prompting a response, or distinguishing a visual element.
  8. When a product permits a user to adjust color and contrast settings, a range of color selections capable of producing a variety of contrast levels shall be provided.
  9. Products shall be designed to avoid causing the screen to flicker with a frequency greater than 2 Hz and lower than 55 Hz.
  10. Products which are freestanding, non-portable, and intended to be used in one location and which have operable controls shall comply with the following:
    1. The position of any operable control shall be determined with respect to a vertical plane, which is 48 inches in length, centered on the operable control, and at the maximum protrusion of the product within the 48 inch length.
    2. Where any operable control is 10 inches or less behind the reference plane, the height shall be 54 inches maximum and 15 inches minimum above the floor.
    3. Where any operable control is more than 10 inches and not more than 24 inches behind the reference plane, the height shall be 46 inches maximum and 15 inches minimum above the floor.
    4. Operable controls shall not be more than 24 inches behind the reference plane.

Desktop and portable computers.

  1. All mechanically operated controls and keys shall comply with Telecommunications Products (k) (1) through (4).
  2. If a product utilizes touchscreens or touch-operated controls, an input method shall be provided that complies with Telecommunications Products (k) (1) through (4).
  3. When biometric forms of user identification or control are used, an alternative form of identification or activation, which does not require the user to possess particular biological characteristics, shall also be provided.
  4. Where provided, at least one of each type of expansion slots, ports and connectors shall comply with publicly available industry standards.

Information, Documentation, and Support

  1. Product support documentation provided to end-users shall be made available in alternate formats upon request, at no additional charge.
  2. End-users shall have access to a description of the accessibility and compatibility features of products in alternate formats or alternate methods upon request, at no additional charge.
  3. Support services for products shall accommodate the communication needs of end-users with disabilities.